Stride with Styles

11th August 2019

A much loved and missed friend has inspired a fundraising walk in her memory that will end with the group paying tribute at her graveside


Friends of Emily Styles take on fundraising walk in memory

Five of Emily Styles’ friends will set off from Milton Keynes and walk the 14 miles to her grave in Buckingham to help raise money for Meningitis Now.

Lara Busby, Tanya Holmes, Kat Carr, Talia Kent and Evie Dowdall all knew Emily before she died on New Year's Day 2014, aged just 19, after contracting meningitis two days earlier. Emily’s family have been long-time supporters of Meningitis Now, including dad Peter who ran the Vitality London 10,000 for us in May and mum Julia, who helped us launch Marathon Month

Now, having seen how much the charity has helped Emily’s family, they wanted to give something back.

All five of the friends have their own memories of Emily, a young woman they described as a “one of a kind”.

Kat said Emily would never fail to cheer anyone up. “You couldn’t help but feel better when she was around,” she said. 

“My favourite memory is when we had a big picnic together in 2013,” added Lara. “We laughed, danced horrifically and spent quality time together – not to mention ate way too much food!”. 

Evie said she would miss Emily’s “amazing laugh and her hugs”, while Tanya added, “It was my birthday, I was a single mum and she just turned up at my house with her mum and sister in tow and told me we were going shopping and her mum was going to babysit."

“She was always so thoughtful like that and just knew whenever someone needed a friend”.

All that matters is that we finish it together

The five friends said they were training “slowly” for the walk but said that it was the furthest any of them had ever walked. “We are hoping that it won’t take any longer than six hours but all that matters is that we finish it together so if it takes longer we don’t mind,” said Lara. 

“We are hoping it won’t be too hot and hills will be our enemy."

“But I am looking forward to finishing the walk feeling like we have accomplished something brilliant while raising money for a charity so close to our hearts”.

As Emily was only 19 when she died, Lara wanted to add a special message in support of our students and young people’s campaign: “Understand all the symptoms of meningitis so that you can keep an eye out for anyone in your halls as well as yourself,” she said.

“Emily never had the infamous meningitis rash, so don’t base your decision to get checked on whether this happens as you could be wasting precious time”.

You can donate to Stride with Styles here.

Students

Are you heading off to uni?

Teenagers and young adults are more susceptible to meningitis. Before you set off, make sure you are up-to-date with your meningitis vaccinations and brush-up on your meningitis knowledge. Find out more
  • Pumpkin Parade 2019 link box

    Spook-tacular Pumpkin Parade

    Our Pumpkin Parade is a lantern-lit, family fun event, aiming to raise valuable funds and awareness to continue our fight against meningitis

  • Meningitis survivor Nick tackles Three Peaks

    Meningitis survivor's Three Peaks

    Nick could never have imagined when he was recovering from a coma that one day he would climb the three highest peaks in the country, all within 36 hours

  • Ashley and Caffe Nero fundraise for Meningitis Now

    Brew can do it, Ashley!

    From Nero to Hero – Ashley persuaded her workplace to match fund her when she went all out to raise money for Meningitis Now

  • Clacton Toddle Waddle fundraising event

    Toddle Waddle superheroes

    Swooping in to save the day, a group of mini superheroes toddled and waddled along Clacton seafront to raise funds for Meningitis Now